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DT Askew pleads not guilty

CINCINNATI (July 24, 2006) -- Cincinnati Bengals defensive tackle Matthias Askew pleaded not guilty to charges of resisting arrest, obstructing official business and two parking violations.

Police charged the 6-foot-5, 302-pound lineman, saying the 24-year-old struggled with officers trying to handcuff him and broke away before being shocked with a stun gun. He had ignored an officer's warning to move his illegally parked car and then refused to give his identification when asked for it, police said.

Askew's lawyer disputed that version of events, saying officers shocked Askew at least three times.

"They are trying to make this look like it was all Matthias' fault ... so they could justify the use of force," attorney Ken Lawson said. "He always complied."

Askew did not speak during the brief court appearance.

The Bengals generally do not comment on players' pending legal matters.

Askew's arrest came about a week after Bengals owner Mike Brown issued a statement to reassure fans that the team has standards for its players. Three other Bengals players have been charged with criminal offenses in recent months.

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